Rohit Sharma: Consistency in selection beneficial for team

Consistency in team selection has started paying dividends for India, opener Rohit Sharma said ahead of his side's crunch contest against Pakistan in the Asia Cup Twenty20 tournament on Saturday.

Rohit Sharma: "We have a good bunch (of cricketers) who at any point are ready to take the challenge."   -  AP

Consistency in team selection has started paying dividends for India, opener Rohit Sharma said ahead of his side's crunch contest against Pakistan in the Asia Cup Twenty20 tournament on Saturday. "If any individual knows he has the backing of the team, that's when he opens up and expresses himself better, gets the performance going," Sharma told reporters on Friday in Fatullah, just outside Dhaka.

"For us also, we have been playing with the squad for a while which shows that we have a good bunch (of cricketers) who at any point are ready to take the challenge. That's a good sign and we are very proud of that. It's a good sign going into the (Twenty20) World Cup."

India has refrained from tinkering with its Twenty20 squad and has reaped the rewards with wins over Australia and Sri Lanka in recent back-to-back series. It carried its success in the Asia Cup opener against Bangladesh this week, registering a crushing 45-run win to give itself a perfect boost before the match against arch-rival Pakistan.

Batting is strength

The neighbours will renew cricket's most bitter rivalry after a one-year gap, having last played in the 50-over World Cup in Australia-New Zealand in 2015. Their showdowns usually draw hundreds of millions of television viewers, making it the biggest box office attraction in the sport.

India, who have won all but one of their previous six Twenty20 internationals against Pakistan, will start again as favourites, but Sharma chose to be cautious.

"Pakistan has a formidable bowling attack, no doubt," said Sharma, who top-scored with a quickfire 83 off 55 balls against Bangladesh. But we would want to concentrate more on our strengths and prepare our plans accordingly. Our strength is batting and depending on the wicket we will have to focus on that," he said.